WASHINGTON, March 6 (UPI) -- U.S. exports of petroleum products topped the 4 million barrel per day mark in December, a monthly record, the Energy Information Administration said.
EIA said the United States exported 4.3 million barrels per day worth of products ranging from gasoline to jet fuel in December, the first time exports topped 4 million bpd for any single month.
Not counting the United States, EIA said in its weekly petroleum report published Wednesday that global consumption of petroleum products increased 7.6 percent from 2008 to 6.5 million barrels per day last year.
"Since 2008, exports of petroleum products from the United States have increased 1.7 million bpd, supplying about 25 percent of the growth in petroleum product demand outside of the United States," the administration said.
Nearly three quarters of the petroleum products leave the United States from the Gulf Coast, home to about 50 percent of the nation's refining capacity.
Crude oil exports are restricted by legislation enacted in response to the 1970s Arab oil embargo.
In terms of imports, EIA said the United States is still importing "significant" volumes of petroleum products each year.
"However, imports are generally declining, and since mid-2011, the United States consistently has been a net petroleum product exporter," EIA said.